Nova Scotia

Chebucto Road trees felled, opponents arrested

Police arrested three people Monday to clear a path for workers to remove trees along a busy Halifax street earmarked for widening.

Police say woman arrested Monday was also arrested Friday

Police arrested three people Monday as workers removed the last trees along a section of a busy Halifax street earmarked for widening.

It was another emotional day for opponents of the Chebucto Road project.

"What those trees represent is the real issue, and they represent the falling of democracy," said Joe MacDonnell, president of the Chebucto Neighbourhood Association.

The chainsaws started buzzing at 6 a.m., an attempt to avoid another noisy demonstration like the one Friday, when six people were arrested, police said.

Const. Jeff Carr said a woman charged last week was among the three arrested Monday.

"She had agreed not to return to that area as a condition of her release and she was there this morning," he said, adding the woman is now accused of violating a court order.

Carr said two men were arrested for breach of the peace — one for sitting in an intersection and refusing to leave and the other for refusing to move away from a tree as crews were cutting it down.

Seven trees in all were removed from a section of Chebucto Road. Later in the day, the bulldozers started their work.

Halifax regional council approved the road-widening project, which the municipality hopes will ease traffic congestion coming off the nearby Armdale roundabout.

This means some residents will lose a section of their front lawns.

Opponents cite a number of reasons for the ongoing protest, including saving homes and the neighbourhood, and fighting for sustainable transportation.

There was yelling and crying Friday when a crowd of about 60 gathered on Chebucto Road as crews felled the first tree.

Police said none of the six people arrested Friday live on Chebucto Road.

According to one regional councillor, the early-morning work Monday violated the municipality's noise bylaw, which forbids construction projects from starting before 7 a.m. The only exceptions to this rule are if police declare an emergency or residents are given 48 hours' written notice.